Consultation on Changes to Resource Bases for Hearing Impairment at Southampton Mainstream Schools

School and Local Authority details

  • Southampton City Council, Civic Centre, Southampton, SO14 7LY
  • Tanners Brook Primary School, Elmes Drive, Millbrook, Southampton, SO15 4PF
  • Newlands Primary School, 65 Windermere Avenue, Southampton, SO16 9QX

The Proposal

Southampton City Council (LA) is seeking to make changes to the specialist SEN Hearing Impairment Resource Base that is currently operated by Tanners Brook Primary School in Southampton from September 2022 to reflect changes in the demand for this provision.

The proposed changes are:

  • To close the Hearing Impaired Resource Base at Tanners Brook Primary School
  • To open a new Hearing Impaired Resource Base at Newlands Primary School

Current Provision

Southampton has a number of resource bases which are located within mainstream schools. These bases provide specialist teaching and support for pupils with specific special educational needs allowing them to be educated in a mainstream setting. All pupils who attend the resource base have an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP).

The resource base at Tanners Brook Primary School provides support for up to eight pupils with a hearing impairment. Specialist teaching is provided in a resource base classroom, and pupils admitted demonstrate the potential to be included in the mainstream classroom supported by a teaching assistant, communicator or specialist teacher advisor for at least part of the week. Pupils access the national curriculum with modification and/or differentiation as appropriate.

Objectives, description of alteration and evidence of demand

Southampton, in recent years, has seen an increase in the number of pupils with complex needs relating to their hearing impairments. Whilst the needs of the majority of these pupils can be met in mainstream schools, a number require more specialist provision. In order to meet the needs of primary aged hearing impaired pupils, it is proposed to open a new purpose built resource base at Newlands Primary School to cater for pupils aged between 4 and 11. The total number of places available will not exceed 14.

It is proposed that the new resource base will be an extension of the current school. This will ensure that the pupils are fully included in all aspects of school life.

This proposal ensures that the council can meet the needs of all hearing impaired pupils in the city by increasing the number of available places.

Education Standards

We want all children and young people to have a good or better education in their local community, where they can achieve their potential and which prepares them well to go on to further education, employment or training. For those with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND), inclusion is fundamental to them achieving their ambitions and entering adulthood with confidence and security. Inclusion aims to benefit children with SEND through improvements in their learning outcomes, including their social and emotional development, academic achievement and progress, and personal development.

The effect on pupils attending the resource base at Tanners Brook Primary School

There are currently six pupils attending the resource bases at Tanners Brook. The needs of the children and what parents want will be the most important part of our considerations. The options for these children will be to:

  • Remain in Tanners Brook mainstream with support from the Specialist Teacher Advisory Service. Tanners Brook would be formally consulted as part of this process
  • Move to the new resource base at Newlands Primary School
  • Move to another mainstream school with support from the Specialist Teacher Advisory Service. The school would be formally consulted as part of this process

The effect on other schools within the area

This proposal will not impact other Southampton schools.

What happens next?

This statutory consultation lasted for five weeks and started on Thursday 15 October 2020.

The consultation closed midnight on Wednesday 18 November 2020.

The proposal was brought to Cabinet on 15 December 2020 and was agreed.

Procedure for responses and comments